Don’t Be Poor AFTER You Graduate – Get an Internship Now
As a current college student, I think it’s safe to say you understand the significance of securing a respectable internship. Ask any college career counselor and they will tell you a summer internship is unquestionably a path you should pursue for a plethora of logical reasons. Internships can lend you special access to participating in a real workplace environment that is directly related to your area of study; provide opportunities to develop an executive network of contacts; catapult your understanding of the requisites to be effective in the workplace; expand your list of marketable skills and relevant work experiences desired by future employers; presents a real workplace environment to employ academic theory you are in the process of mastering.
Clearly, there are a host of valid reasons why you should be considering the pursuit of an internship. As you may know, most college students don’t get internships, because simply put, it can be difficult. Unfortunately, in the present economic recession, there are both fewer jobs and internships. However, if you set this personal goal and remain focused, you can without question land an impressive internship. If you are willing to commit yourself to this personal challenge, you will find the actionable tips below very useful in your search of internship opportunities.
Tap into resources provided by the university. Be sure to schedule an appointment with your on-campus career adviser to learn about any companies your school may have a connection or partnership with. Also, take a minute and join any mailing lists relating to internship possibilities.
Reach out and establish contacts at career events. Of course, company recruiters who attend career fairs are primarily searching for potential full-time employees, however a substantial chunk of those companies commonly have internship positions available as well. It’s important to be proactive and engaging when meeting with the various company representatives. It’s critical that you ask for business cards and other forms of contact, while inquiring about internship options. Later, you can utilize these organizational contacts to setup a meeting or initiate a connection with someone who can “get you in the door”.
Thoroughly research your options. It’s paramount for you to spend time discovering opportunities that are posted online and offline. First, see if you can utilize any personal connections to help you find an opporutinty. Initially, spread the word via any social media networks in which you actively participate. Next, spend time trying to discover internships within a close proximity to your current location. For those opportunities which can’t be discovered online, this is the space for you to distill your interests. This translates researching and creating a spreadsheet of organizations that are aligned with your career pursuits and areas of passion. Once you have compiled a list, reach out to these businesses, while being prepared to enthusiastically present solid reasons why they should bring you on and how you can help increase the bottom line. If you are able to skillfully and persuasively present how you can become a useful asset to the company, it’s likely you will be given the opportunity to work as an intern.
It’s true. Looks matter. The manner in which you are dressed and speak during your interview is incredibly important. You must exude a professional confidence, while maintaining a certain authenticity, creating an image that you are the real deal. Further, make it very clear that you are very excited about the position and are looking forward to being very productive. It’s ideal to relay a sense of energized positivity about the potential opportunity. Be yourself and allow your personality to become exposed, in other words, be likable. Of course, to be fully prepared you must also have a list of thoughtful and intelligent questions you are able to issue, showing that you have contemplated the reality of assuming the post.
Remind them why you are a great fit for the internship. Once you have made a connection with someone in person or via email or phone, it is necessary that you reach out to re-connect with them. Make sure to reiterate why you will fit well with their organization and what you can offer to add to their success.
I can assure you that if you follow the above guide, you will gain exposure to a respectable amount of internship opportunities. Also, once you start your internship, it is recommended to treat each day as an exam, meaning, come prepared to work hard and perform at a high level. Last, when your internship concludes, you need to maximize the experience by requesting letters of recommendation. These letters are of high-value, in that, they will help you land future internships and first full-time positions after graduation.
Author: Justin Stephenson is a writer for Collegeboxes.com, the #1 provider of summer storage and shipping for college students in the U.S.
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